Stage Two - The Review 12/15
2,000 words or less
Cobra F8+ – Official MGS Forum Review by Eric Seay
Welcome back to another round of reviews here at MyGolfSpy! Again, we must start by saying thank you very much to the MyGolfSpy peeps for allowing me this opportunity to test!
East TN, not typically known for bad weather, decided that it was going to play a huge factor in this testing by limiting the amount of time that I to get out and test this club...unfortunately, we are working on two range sessions and ONE, sadly just one, round of golf. my first range session was a cool, windy day and depending on which way the wind had switched could give real fits to the shots that I was hitting, which for testing purposes, I really liked! The one round of golf I was able to play was a very cool day, frost delay in the morning, (not sure the greens ever thawed out) overcast, not much wind, and a little damp. perfect for ball flight and distance, right?!
With that said and the scene being set, let’s start this show!
Describe the following:
The general shape of the club is appealing to the eye in my opinion. Fairly round, looks like a large/oversized head and has that appearance like you aren't going to be able to miss the clubface. Looking down it feels like it has some depth to it and that from the sole to the crown is a large area.
With the crown and the top of the club there is a lot going on. The back half of the club is your new age / modern carbon fiber look, the front portion has a fairly large Cobra logo that works as an alignment aid and from heel to toe you have raised lines for aerodynamics similar to my Ping G30. Essentially three different “pieces” all on the top. With the black model all of this really blends in together and you barely notice the carbon fiber on the back half. The face of the driver has the CNG milled face design that doesn't draw too much attention but one item that I found appealing is the large circle at the sweet spot. At setup it almost acts as a 2nd alignment aid to know if you are setting up off of center or not.
Overall it has a really nice design and although you have multiple pieces such as the raised edges, carbon fiber crown, the logo and the giant circle on the face, the whole look fits together really nicely. Up close al these items are different and unique but when looking down at setup everything is subtle and allows you to focus in on the shot and the alignment
Coming from the Ping G30 its a much different looking club. While both have the raised lines on the crown for the aerodynamics, the Ping has a flat black look, no real alignment aid, and limited lines/grooves on the face. The Ping has a more simplistic design to it while the Cobra, much like its foremost brand ambassador Rickie Fowler, has a little more swag. Some will like the looks of one more than the other, myself, I can enjoy both looks and therefore the Cobra gets a solid scoring from me in the looks category.
(9 out of 10 points)
Sound & Feel
Describe how the driver sounds and feels
The very first thing that I noticed when taking the F8+ to the range was the sound it made on my first swing, or lack of real sound. It had a smooth, soft feel like cutting through butter while the sound was just the ball just simply launching off the clubface. There wasn't a loud “tink” or a sound of ripping through a piece of paper, it was a soft sound. No one will hear you hitting this club from 3 holes away. Something that i really noticed on impact was how it felt like the ball stayed on the clubface. It seemed like the when the club and ball met they rode with each other through the swing for about a second in the ball jumped off the face into the air. After a long enough range session I was able to catch a couple off the heel and I still have to give it solid remarks. Any shot that I hit off the heel still felt solid. You obviously noticed that it was hit off the heel as it was able to give you feedback but there was not any ringing, rattling, shaking, vibrating, etc. A little bit of a cut spin but otherwise your hands were still intact. Some drivers feel like you are hitting a baseball with an aluminum bat in 40 degree weather off the handle. Not the Cobra. Any mishits felt forgiving off the clubface and seemed to have a forgiving ball flight and end result.
(9 out of 10 points) No perfect score because I wasn't able to feel one off the toe!
Because of the lovely Tennessee weather that we had after receiving the club I was only able to get to the range two times. The good news is I was able to hit a lot of shots and get a good feel for what the F8+ could offer!
To preface, not to toot my own horn, but Im a range wizard. I look like i’ve played this game for a long time, which I have, and I look like I know what i'm doing, which is always debatable, when i'm on the range
After beating some balls off the cold mats with the irons just to loosen up it was time to bring out the driver! First 10 or so swings were just to get a feel for the club. At this point I had the F8+ set to 9.5 degrees loft with the draw setting. Usually I do not adjust a club and change the settings on it but because I had to change out the shaft after Global sent me a R flex, I decided to set this to a draw setting. The adjusting portion is super easy and Global Golf actually does a great job of offering videos on all their clubs how to properly adjust. Just watch out for that loud click! When I twisted the screw in on the last turn I thought I had snapped the shaft into 2 pieces!
The club felt great with every swing. Even with just a stiff flex shaft it doesn't feel whippy or too light at all. I was able to consistently hit my target on the first range session only hitting one really bad miss. My miss is a high block slice that is really just a result of a really bad swing. I get lazy, fall to my back side, dont swing the club and it ends up way right. Even making that one bad swing I was able to quickly tell that with that bac swing, the Cobra was going to be more forgiving for me. Typically I hit this ball 2 holes over or out of the county, the F8+ kept it from being only 30 yards off target rather than 60+. 1 Bonus point for the Cobra!
My distance seemed average compared to my ping, hard to tell on the range if I was gaining 5-10 additional yards or not but without question the spin had been reduced. As I said in my intro, the range session was very windy with the majority of the wind coming from left to right and a little bit into me. My typical ball flight is straight or with a minor fade so the ball flight should have been riding with the wind. It was easy to tell that the ball was actually cutting through the wind and fighting against it to not go right. There was a boring, low, fighting trajectory with the Cobra that was really great to see. With this style of ball flight it was easy to tell that the Cobra f8+ had reduced a lot of my spin. I really really wish I was able to get onto a LM to see just how much my spin had reduced from the ping to the Cobra. And if it hasnt...so be it, but it feels like it has and looks like it has and that makes for higher confidence on the tee box!
with a few of the mishits that were all off of the toe the ball flight and traj didnt change much. I think this is a very forgiven club. I would say with the heel shots that distance was affected obviously but still very accurate to the target and not extraordinarily penal.
My typical range game after warming up with the driverer after warming up is to pick multiple targets, usually two flags, or with my local range a building with a metal roof off in the distance, and hit the ball between the targets while not worrying about distance. I rotate between my different targets forcing me to hit at different directions on the range for 20 shots. This range day I was 14-20 hitting within my target. This is on par or slightly above average for compared to other range sessions with other drivers.
(18 out of 20 points)
I would really have loved to have more play with the Cobra than just one time but that’s all I was able to get. It was black friday, the weather was going to be about 50 degrees for the high (it never got there) and golfers were dying to get to the course. I played at Avalon Golf Course which is one of my favorites but isn't superb for a driver testing. The course is a little tight and on the front 9 you wouldn't really hit driver a ton if you feel a little erratic with the driver as I usually do. BUT! Im there to test the F8+ so I was going to let it fly ALL DAY LONG.
At this point i’m still adjusted to 9.5 degrees with a draw face playing the shorter tees, 6300 on this cold, frigid day. First shot of the day a little of the heel but straight, safe, and left with about a 9i into the green. Similar to my range session the driver remained forgiving all day long and excluding a couple of bad swings by me, I would say the F8+ had a solid first showing.
As many of you know the Cobra comes standard with the Arcoss Cobra Connect sensor and the free download with the app. This was my first time using it but I really like the idea of it. I would occasionally forget to leave it in my pocket, a requirement in order for the app to know when you’ve hit a shot, and where you hit your next shot from but I was excited to see my post round results.
I hit 7 Fairways out of 12 swings (Only measures the first swing from a specific location. i.e. if your in a bunker for 4 shots it cant track all the swings).
Missed 3 Left, missed 2 right. What it doesnt tell you is that I made two AWFUL swings where Charles Barkley would’ve laughed. Pulled the head way up and out, swung open with the hips, and was lucky to make contact.
My long drive of the day was 281 and my average distance was 260. For the weather that we had, frigid, damp, etc. these numbers are pretty accurate and comparable to my Ping. However, distance is not my issue. My issue is finding the fairway (or really the golf course in general). I was in play all day long minus one shot, good looks at the hole and no real penalizing shots. I didn't spend my entire day mowing down high grass or chasing my balls in the woods with the squirrels.
But this is where it really gets fun and another reason why I wish I had a few more good weather days to try the club. After making the turn I hit really solid shots on 12, 13, and 14. All three though drew about 15 yards left of my target, all in play, but all with the same ball flight. All three of these holes have trouble down the left but I was in play. I’m not used to hitting a ball with a draw and if we are being honest, these shots are really taking left hand turns versus drawing or hooking left. Obviously, if that was going to be the consistent shot one could aim more right of the target but that’s not me. So in the middle of 14 fairway I changed the setting on the driver to a neutral face. It’s really simple, loosen the screw, lift the head out, turn the head around the shaft and click it back in.
Hole 15 is really straight, a little narrow, really elevated tee box and plays about 320. The first swing with the new setting is where I hit my longest of the day, 281. Left me with just a flip wedge onto the green for an easy par.
Hole 17 is a really neat hole. the tee box again is elevated and the tee ball is all carry over water. the green sits on the left side of the view and the fairway/green runs perpendicular to the water. The further you can hit the tee ball the more at the green you can go. If you go directly at the front portion of the green you have to hit it around 275 carry to cover the water and then a easy chip up. i usually aim, because i'm conservative, about 30 yards right of the green to leave myself another flip wedge. That way if I block it i'm hitting a short iron and if I pull it I have enough carry usually to still be on land. I hit another rocket, right on my target, and launched it. easy wedge, easy par.
Finally 18 hit another great drive that I was really pleased with.
Now im just kicking myself that I didn't leave it neutral to begin with!
(35 out of 40 points) I dont think i gained any distance but the forgiveness and accuracy are a great bonus.
Play it or Trade it?
and the results are in! After 2 range sessions and one round of golf we have a winner! As I move forward into 2019 the driver in my bag will be……..the Cobra F8+! It’s a really solid option for a driver, its forgiveness, feel, accuracy are all great assets. I think with the right shaft it will only get better. I think this is great driver all around that anyone could see benefit out of but especially someone that has too high of a spin rate with their current club. That has been the key element that I have taken away is the anticipated spin reduction rate that I have with the Cobra. I dont think there’s a driver on the market that can really provide me a large gain in distance but I do think this one has narrowed in my dispersion and my misses and that makes it a winner for me
(19 out of 20 points)
I’m going with college rules here and for me this driver is an A. I would love to have more sessions with it and I plan on getting fit for a shaft asap to see if spin can be reduced further but as is, i’m pretty happy with it. i believe that TGF was able to hone in with the data that I provided to offer me a product that would reduce my spin rate while keeping my distance or gaining. As I said, i'm not positive that I was able to gain additional distance without getting on a LM and comparing side by side but I do know that my dispersion and spin was down. After making the change from the draw face to neutral, my confidence soared with the last three swings i made (and probably my last swings of 2018). I’m really anxious to get out there in 2019 and check out some shafts and see if I cant become dangerous with the driver again!
I just want to thank MyGolfSpy one last time and say i’m a believer in TGF as I think it figured me out correctly. I also want to thank Global Golf for allowing us to test/try out their U-Try Program. Check out my stage 1 review if you want some information on how it worked and some of the kinks they have!
Final Score: (90 out of 100 points)!!!